A League Of Legends At Christie’s Football Sale – -George Best, Bobby Moore, Chopper Harris, Rivelino and Eric Cantona all represented at Christie’s autumn sale of football memorabilia

Christie’s Football Memorabilia on 13 September will include the jersey worn by George Best during the Manchester United versus Northampton Town F.A. Cup match in 1970, when he scored six goals and played arguably his finest ever football performance, as well as the jersey worn by Brazilian legend Rivelino in 1970 World Cup Final. The sale will include approximately 250 lots of shirts, boots, caps, medals, programmes and paintings, with estimates ranging from £100 to £35,000.

George Best ShirtGeorge Best is remembered as one of the finest players to have graced British football; Pelé referred to him as ‘greatest player in the world’ and he earned the title of both European Footballer of the Year and Football Writers’ Association Player of the Year in 1968. He played for Manchester United between 1963 and 1974, winning two football league championships and the European Cup.

George Best Arguably his most famous and impressive performance was in the 5th round match of the F.A. Cup in 1970 against Northampton Town which Manchester United won 8-1. Best set a then-record for the competition by scoring 6 goals as he single-handedly destroyed the team at the County Ground in Northampton with a range of skills, flicks, dribbles and headers. Best was being marked by Northampton player Roy Fairfax who said after the game that ‘the closest I got to him was when we shook hands after the game.’ The shirt worn by Best on that day was won by the current owner in a national newspaper competition in 1996, and is offered in September with an estimate of £20,000-30,000.

Rivelino ShirtThe shirt worn by Rivelino at the 1970 World Cup Final will also be offered in the sale. Rivelino was a flamboyant Brazilian midfielder best remembered for his thunderous free kicks, elastic dribbling and bandit moustache. He won over 100 caps and scored 43 goals, including three at the World Cup finals of 1970 where he played every game for the Brazil team still considered to be the greatest ever. The 1970 World Cup was held in Mexico; Brazil beat England, Romania and Czechoslovakia in the group stages before victories against Peru then Uruguay saw them to the Final. On 21 June 1970, Brazil defeated Italy 4-1 and won the World Cup for the third time. Rivelino fainted at the final whistle and had to be carried from the field. The shirt is offered from a family source and is expected to realise £25,000-35,000.

A further highlight is the 1970 F.A. Cup Winners medal awarded to Chelsea Captain Ron ‘Chopper’ Harris (estimate: £8,000-12,000). Harris is a legend of Chelsea football club, having captained the team during the 1960s and 1970s and led them to European glory at the 1971 European Cup Winner’s Cup Final victory against Real Madrid. He was feared as one of the toughest defenders of his generation, and this was perhaps best illustrated by his physical display during the 1970 F.A. Cup Final against Leeds United. With Leeds winning 2 goals to 1 at Wembley and only five minutes remaining, Harris took a quick free kick to set up Ian Hutchinson for an equalizer. The replay was another physical contest at Old Trafford on 29 April, and Chelsea went on to win 2-1 after extra time to win the F.A. Cup for the first time.

The shirt worn by World Cup winning captain Bobby Moore in his last ever English League match will be offered with an estimate of £3,000-5,000. The match between Fulham and Blackburn Rovers on the 14 May 1977 was also Moore’s 1,000th senior game and his 804th league appearance. A further highlight is the shirt worn by Eric Cantona in his last ever league appearance for Manchester United against West Ham United on 11 May 1997 (estimate: £1,500-2,000). The shirt was swapped after the match with John Moncur, and was then won in a national newspaper competition by the current owner. The boots worn by Cantona in his last ever professional game for Manchester United against Coventry City in the David Busst Testimonial on 16 May 1997 will be offered with an estimate of £500-800.

Further highlights of the sale include the 1935 F.A. Cup winner’s medal awarded to Sheffield Wednesday player Mark Hooper (estimate: £4,000-6,000), a selection of caps, medals and shirts associated with the career of the former Celtic, Crystal Palace, Sunderland and Scotland striker John ‘Yogi’ Hughes, including a medal presented to him by Celtic after their European Cup triumph in Lisbon in 1967 (estimate: £3,000-5,000) and a selection of items relating to the career of Danny Blanchflower, including his 1962

F.A. Cup winner’s medal (estimate: £7,000-10,000), 1961 League Championship medal (estimate: £12,000-18,000) and his 1958 Footballer of the Year Trophy (estimate: £6,000-8,000).

TOP 3 PRICES FOR FOOTBALL MEMORABILIA AT CHRISTIE’S

Christie’s have been holding sales dedicated to Football Memorabilia since 1989, and currently hold two annual sales at their salerooms in South Kensington, London.
The following list shows the Top 3 prices realised for Football Memorabilia at Christie’s.

1. May 2005 The FA Challenge Cup (1896-1910), presented to Lord Kinaird £478,400

WORLD RECORD PRICE FOR FOOTBALL MEMORABILIA AT AUCTION

2. May 2005 A 1966 World Cup Winner’s medal awarded to Alan Ball, MBE £164,800

WORLD RECORD PRICE FOR A FOOTBALL MEDAL AT AUCTION

3. March 2002 Pele’s shirt from the 1970 World Cup Final £157,750

WORLD RECORD PRICE FOR A FOOTBALL SHIRT AT AUCTION

For more details visit the Christies web site.

Visit the WCN Sports Collectibles information pages.

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